The ship is the largest in the MSC fleet. It was gorgeous and the cabin was larger than many of the American cruiselines I've traveled on. I love the Italian cruiselines because we (Americans and English speakers) are the minority and its great to be imursed in the different Italian, French, and Spanish cultures and languages. MSC was just as fabulous as Costa (which I traveled on last year to the Greek Isles out of Venice).
Food and Dining
3 out of 5
I was expecting small small portions of food after reading the other reviews...but it just goes to show you that we are some greedy folks (ha). The portions were perfect and often large. Plus, you can always order everything on the menu to taste different dishes or they will bring you seconds if you ask. The pasta dishes were always my favorite....
3 out of 5
There was plenty of bars/lounges - my favs were the Manhattan Bar (an amazing Jazz band every night and soulful Italian vocalist) and the Wine Bar (yummy...and don't pass up doing the wine sampler which includes food for like only $15 and they fill the 4 glass up).
The shows were very entertaining...the Michael Jackson tribute was fabulous. The performances seemed to be much more grand on this ship than any other ship that I've cruised on. And the games that they played after in the Manhattan bar were fun.
Service and Staff
5 out of 5
The employees were extremely nice...I had no problems with communicating. My waiter and cabin steward both spoke english and were amazing!
We didn't do much here other than a city tour. I think that the best part of the trip was when we walked down to the city beach and wandered into a wine store where they sold wine by the gallon at 1.5 Euro...AMAZING!! We brought it onto the ship for later (it was in a 2 liter water bottle).
I'd opt for the excursions if you can swing it. I heard they were good.
We took a 1/2 day trip shopping in Aix en Provence. We thought we were going to see all the beautiful lavendar flowers you see in the pix...but NOPE...not on the agenda. The shopping was fun..the soaps smelled good..but we only got 1 hour to shop. Too short of a time.
Amazing....we ported and opted to take the Portofino excursion. Just gorgeous. The drive through the mountains was amazing and then the ferry to Portofino was delightful. The place was awesome...good shopping and just so romantic. Downside is that it was just a 1/2 day trip. We wish we could have stayed longer.
This port was the one I was most looking forward to. We ended up just paying for the bus ride into Rome and back. We purchased tickets to the Vatican online the night before (its cheaper and you don't have to wait in line). However, when we got there we were pressed for time so we found a tour company (just walk around the Vatican area near the cobble stone streets and you'll run into tour guides pushing their tours) with a woman from Boston who was our tour guide. We ended up paying $30/each for the tour and they used our tickets we bought online. Get a guided tour that way you get in and bypass all the lines...plus they give you history and its worth it! I loved it.
Once we were done with the tour we ended up going on the city tour so that we could get a glimpse of as much of the sites we could...Trevi fountain, Colleseum...etc. Loved it but we didn't have much time. The downside of this cruise was the fact that we only had 6 hours in Rome. Definitely not enough time.
I was sooooo excited to go to Malta. We took a city tour and spent a good amount of time at the castle. Also, on the last stop before you get back to the ship...get off and experience the view. We took some great pix. BTW - We also went to Tunisia....beautiful but don't pay extra $ for dishes as you can get the same ones at the Souk.
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